Yearly Archives: 2021

Reversing Course on Western Sahara Serves US National Interests

Image Credit: Michele Benericetti, Creative Commons License

By Djaouida Siaci
Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, March 29, 2021

The former Trump administration’s persistent pattern of violating international law has put the United States on the same level as the rogue nations that subvert international consensus and the rules-based international order.
This pattern is most profound in former President Trump’s last foreign policy act: a tweet in which he recognized Morocco’s claim of alleged sovereignty over occupied Western Sahara (cont.)

Journal article

NZ support group launches the Western Sahara New Zealand campaign and website

On 4 March 2021 Western Sahara supporters in New Zealand celebrated the launch of the Western Sahara New Zealand campaign and website.

An online live-streamed panel discussed New Zealand’s role in Western Sahara

The panel included:
Mr. Kamel Fadel: Polisario Representative for Australia & New Zealand
Ms. Louisa Wall,  Labour  MP
Ms. Golriz Ghahraman, Green MP
• The Panel discussion was facilitated by Otepoti-based artist: Mr. Matthew Galloway

Video of launch and discussion

Western Sahara Campaign NZ
The recently established Western Sahara Campaign NZ is a nationwide network of people committed to supporting and advocating for the Saharawi people’s right to self-determination.
Website
Facebook

Western Sahara National Day 27 February: Flags raised in NSW and Victoria

Leichhardt Town Hall flies WS flag; WS supporters attend ceremony (Images: Shane Teehan and Tony Iltis)


27 February 2021 marks the 45th anniversary of the proclamation ofthe Saharawi Republic (SADR) following Spain’s abrupt withdrawal after almost a hundred years of colonialism.

Saharawi national flags were raised in Sydney and Melbourne to mark the important occasion.

Intergroup for Western Sahara in EU send urgent letter for protection of Saharawi poulation in the occupied territories

porunsaharalibre 26 February, 2021

PUSL.-On 26th of February the Intergroup for Western Sahara in the European Parliament sent an urgent letter voicing their concern regarding the increasing repression in the occupied territory of Western Sahara, the Intergroup for Western Sahara at the European Parliament expresses its solidarity with the Saharawi human rights defenders and political activists under attack and calls for an urgent and robust response from the EU and the Member States.

In the letter the Intergroup higlights the cases of Sultana Khaya and her family, Ghali Bouhalla and Nafaa Botasofra in arbitrary detention, and Mohamed Lamin Haddi political prisoner of the Gdeim Izik Group in hunger strike since 13th January 2021.

Read more >>

ABC RN, Late Night Live: How President Trump helped end a ceasefire in Western Sahara

Click on image to listen ; Image: Stefano Montesi/Corbis via Getty Images

There have been many repercussions of the surprise announcement President Trump made in promising to recognise Morocco’s claims to Western Sahara if Morocco recognised the State of Israel. This from a President who admitted in 2019 he knew nothing about Western Sahara….

Guests
Kamal Fadel, Representative of the Polisario Front in Australia
Dr Randi Irwin, anthropologist and casual lecturer at the University of Newcastle

ABC LNL interview
Duration: 21min 2sec
Broadcast: ABC RN, Late Night Live with Phillip Adams, Wed 24 Feb 2021, 10:20pm

Statement of Western Sahara African Solidarity Virtual Conference 24 Feb 2021

STATEMENT OF THE VIRTUAL CONFERENCE OF AFRICAN MOVEMENTS IN SOLIDARITY WITH WESTERN SAHARA ON THE OCCASION OF THE 45TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SAHAWARI REPUBLIC 24 February 2021

We, the African movements of solidarity with the Saharawi people gathered in the African Virtual Conference to Commemorate the 45th Anniversary of the Saharawi Republic on Wednesday 24 February 2021, with the participation of African dignitaries, political parties, trade unions, civil society and academics from 45 countries.
We, the participants to this Virtual Conference, express our steadfast and unwavering support to the legitimate struggle of the people of the Saharawi Republic for freedom and independence. We call on all Pan-Africanists, who love freedom and peace, to stand by the people of this last colony; for Africa will never be free as long as one of our nations is occupied and brutalised.
Continue reading

Kerri Kennedy writes ‘Biden must undo Trump’s damaging decision on Western Sahara’

AfricaPortal.org, 19 Feb 2021
Kerry Kennedy is president of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, a social justice organisation based in Washington, D.C.

“In August 2012, my daughter Mariah and I took part in an international human rights delegation trip to Western Sahara, where we met with hundreds and hundreds of victims of abuse. People there told us they had been threatened, beaten, raped, tortured and had family members killed, all for criticising the Moroccan regime or calling for self-determination.  (cont….)

Article by Kerry Kennedy

Jamie Parker MP addresses NSW Legislative Assembly about the issue of Western Sahara

Legislative Assembly Hansard – 18 February 2021

WESTERN SAHARA

Mr JAMIE PARKER (Balmain) (17:11): I raise the issue of the Western Sahara, known as Africa’s last colony. I acknowledge the Australian Western Sahara Association, based in my electorate, and the fantastic work it does to support the Saharawi people. On 26 February the people of Western Sahara will commemorate 45 years of the declaration of the Saharawi republic following the abrupt withdrawal of the Spanish in 1976. We salute them on this important anniversary. Since 1963 Western Sahara has been on the UN’s agenda as a decolonisation issue. The United Nations, the International Court of Justice and the African Union have confirmed that the people of Western Sahara have an inalienable right to self?determination. Continue reading

Morocco’s normalisation deal with Israel results in brutal crackdown on activists

Middle East Eye, 19 February 2021

People call for the independence of the Western Sahara in a protest (AFP/Illustration:Mohamad Elasaar/MEE)

Activists in Western Sahara say they are facing a brutal crackdown in the wake of Morocco’s normalisation deal with Israel.
US recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara has, the activists say, emboldened authorities to carry out abuses against ordinary citizens and those who oppose the decision.

Mahmoud Lemaadel, who regularly sheds
light on violations in the region, said that in recent weeks there had been an unprecedented number of attacks on activists and campaigners.

Report by Nadda Osman